I Didn’t Die

Just in case you were wondering.

First, the good news. I actually have something products for sale! (Before you rush off to etsy to snap up these long foretold items, patience dear reader – more on that soon).

Also, I’ve found a career path I’m excited about. And it’s not craft. It’s not even within the creative industry. It’s orthopedic massage  (just a fancy term to make massage sound less flaky). I’m eight months in and I love it. I love working with bodies. I love the anatomy lessons. God, I even love the cadaver lessons, though formaldehyde is not science’s most appealing perfume.

Now, the other news.

I started this blog with a plan to run a craft business. Over the years, I have had occasional spurts of activity in that direction. But something always seemed to get in the way. This last year, it’s been serious illnesses in my family.

So, what’s the news? I don’t want to have a craft business.

But I do want to make things. I love the process of creating something new, but repeating the feat? No so much. Instead, I’ve shifted focus to design. Popcorn November is the new name of Phoebe-made and I’ve got five pun-inspired T-Shirt designs up on Redbubble actually available for sale!

Phoebe C the blog is going to shift focus a little. The appreciation of beautiful things (natural, manmade or DIY) and good food will stay but maybe more focus on things other people have made as well. However, these will become part of a larger focus on matching the importance of an aestheric external world with an internal one.

Phoebe C on etsy will be for the sale of excess crafting supplies – so beads and probably some fabric parcels later down the track.

In the meantime, the spirit of Phoebe C. remains almost the same; make, feel, appreciate, eat cake.

Inverted Chocolate Blueberry Loaf

I’m  cogitating on vocations this month. As such, I’m not getting that much making done except for things that are deliciously decadent and, most important, edible (sugar is a well known aid to those seeking the inner paths of enlightenment you see).

Thusly, behold the Inverted Chocolate Blueberry Loaf: a perfect balance of sweet with salt, soft caramel with bready springiness and blueberries with chocolate.

  • Ingredients
  • 40g butter or margarine
  • 1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 cups blueberries
  • 1 cup self raising flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 60g butter or margarine
  • 3/4 cup caster sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup milk (dairy or soy)

Although the loaf has three layers it’s pretty easy to make.

Method

Firstly grease a loaf tin, then preheat the oven to 170°C.

Next, cream the first lot of butter and the brown sugar then add the maple syrup. Mix until well combined. Scrape the mixture into the loaf tin to cover the bottom 1cm or so up the sides.

Pour the blueberries in the tin in a single layer. Press gently into the butter mix.

In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt.

Back in the original bowl, cream the second lot of butter and sugar (don’t worry about the residue left from the first lot – less washing up is always good in my book). Add the egg and beat until light and soft.

Finally, stir through flour mixture and milk in alternate batches until all the ingredients are well combined. Carefully scrape mixture into the pan, taking care not to dislodge the blueberries.

Stick it in the oven for 50-60 minutes. The loaf is cooked when a skewer comes out clean. Invert the tin onto a plate as soon as it comes out of the oven and leave to sit for a few minutes before removing the pan completely. The loaf is delicious either hot or cold.

Based on a Margaret Fulton recipe for Pineapple Upside Down Cake.

An Accidental Sabbatical

About a month ago, I was getting ready to sit at my computer to write THE BEST BLOG POST EVAH, along with researching the final stage of my plan for world peace and putting the finishing touches on my design for a car powered by positive thinking.

Then, disaster. No internet. No internet, as it turned out, for a month; a whole entire month with no blog, no email, no funny pictures of cats.

After a cavalcade of tradies coming though to decide who’s responsible, the cable that caused all the problems has finally been replaced. Hooray!

I have been busy though, possibly more so with out the procrastinatory (my dictionary says that’s a real word) potential of the net. I’ve been experimenting with fabric jewellery and playing with Illustrator some more. Oh, and a bit of furniture DIY.

We’d been on the look out for bedside tables for over a year, making do with a little set of Ikea ply drawers sitting on the floor. Jazzing up what we already had seemed like the sensible solution to a never-ending search, so we sanded the finish off the drawers then painted them in a gloss red with chrome legs for a fun retro-esque feel. The chrome legs I’d imagined were difficult to track down in the real world – we ended up using door stops.

I’m now happy with this corner of our bedroom. Quarter of the way there…

 

Swanning About

Busy week. In addition to contemplating the possibility I have no future (not the scheduled apocalypse – a more garden variety quarter life crisis), working a strenuous two days a week doing admin and managing a Battlestar Galactica addiction, I’ve been learning how to use Illustrator. Who knew Photoshop couldn’t do everything?

I love the clean lines you get using Illustrator; it has a much more graphic look, which I figure will be useful when I’m designing new stencils. So, back to the computer to play around some more…

I now dream in anchor points.